Japan’s Tanegashima Space Center will launch The Hope Probe 1:58 a.m. UAE time/6:58 a.m. Japanese time Monday (2158 GMT Sunday). It is being sent for a seven-month journey to the red planet. It is supposed to orbit and send back data about the atmosphere.
The first Arab space mission to Mars took off on Monday aboard a rocket from Japan, after many weather delays set back, it has been launched finally.
A live feed of the launch showed the rocket carrying the unmanned probe, known as “Al-Amal” in Arabic, lifting off from the Tanegashima Space Centre in southern Japan.
“We have launched the H-IIA Launch Vehicle No. 42 (H-IIA F42) carrying aboard the Emirates Mars Mission’s (EMM) HOPE spacecraft… at 6:58:14 (JST) (2158GMT),” said the rocket manufacturer Mitsubishi Heavy Industries,after the launch.
Five minutes after the launch, the rocket carrying the probe was on course, carrying out the first separation of its flight.
The Emirati project is one of three racing to Mars, including Tianwen-1 from China and Mars 2020 from the United States. According to NASA, Mars will be a comparatively short 38.6 million miles (62.07 million kilometers) from Earth, in October. Hence taking advantage of a period when the Earth and Mars are nearest, “Hope” is sent.
“Hope” is expected to reach Mars’s orbit by February 2021, marking the 50th anniversary of the unification of the UAE, an alliance of seven emirates.
‘Hope’, will loop the planet for a whole Martian year, or 687 days.
Mission Mars’ objective is to provide a comprehensive image of the weather dynamics in the Red Planet’s atmosphere, the probe is a foundation for a much bigger goal — building a human settlement on Mars within the next 100 years.
The UAE want to address the project to serve as a source of inspiration for Arab youth, in a region too often wracked by sectarian conflicts and economic crisis.